THE TUC has stabbed all Ukrainian anti-fascists in the back, and its own members along with them, with its letter to the UK Chancellor condemning Russia’s security operation in the Ukraine.
This was launched by President Putin as a ‘special military operation’ whose ‘goal is to protect people who have been abused by the genocide of the Kiev regime for eight years.’
He added: ‘Ultimately: We will strive for the demilitarisation and de-Nazification of Ukraine, as well as bringing to justice those who committed numerous bloody crimes against civilians.’
The facts are that since the fascist Maidan Coup which removed the then President Yanukovych on February 22 2014 thousands of workers have been killed in Donetsk and Lugansk in the Donbass region, by Ukrainian fascists, with hundreds of thousands of people recently fleeing to Russia to escape massive fascist artillery bombardments in the region.
Never to be forgotten by Ukrainian workers and the workers of the world is that on May 2, 2014, after the Maidan fascist coup, 48 trade unionists were burnt to death, by fascists when the Trade Unions House in Odessa was burnt down.
The continuation of such atrocities is what led to Russia recognising the independence of the Donetsk and Lugansk Peoples Republics and launching its security operation.
The TUC letter to the UK Chancellor is titled: ‘Protecting working people from the impact of the invasion of Ukraine.’
It states: ‘The trade union movement is united in its condemnation of Russia’s illegal invasion of a sovereign nation. Our solidarity is with the working people of Ukraine. Working people always suffer in conflict and the pursuit of peace is a fundamental trade union value, an essential condition to secure safety, social justice and workers’ and human rights.’
The issue is what about the peace of the Donbass workers who are opposed to fascism and the kind of racism that black, Arab and Asian students have experienced first hand from the Ukrainian army as they sought to leave the Ukraine? (see article on page 4)
Having condemned the anti-fascists, the TUC letter continues: ‘The UK government must now take further action to support and strengthen international efforts to impose significant and effective sanctions on Russia and to support all diplomatic efforts towards peace.’
This is nothing less than the TUC seeking to gain favours from the Tories by joining the anti-Russian bandwagon.
The letter then calls for the Tory regime to protect UK workers stating: ‘The government must also ensure that it takes every step possible to protect working people here at home from the impact of the conflict and measures taken in response to this.
‘We urge you to use your forthcoming budget to act. We call on you to: Protect working families against rising gas prices, by raising funds through a windfall tax on energy profits and a new tax on profits made by UK companies invested in Russian state businesses. The current energy price crisis is hitting workers hard, and prices are likely to rise further.
‘Government should implement existing TUC calls for: Support for households in the form of a grant, not a loan (replacing the energy price rebate proposed by the government). An increase in the Warm Homes Discount, and a permanent increase in Universal Credit.
‘Rapid implementation of an accelerated and expanded domestic home retrofit programme, delivered by local councils who are best placed to deliver fast. Funding for these measures by the implementation of a windfall tax on North Sea oil and gas companies.
‘An immediate increase in the national minimum wage to at least £10 an hour and a strategy to protect pay across the economy, including public services.’ It continues with a call to: ‘Re-introduce the furlough scheme or a permanent short-time working scheme in order to allow companies to protect jobs while they seek to shift their supply chains.’
It ends: ‘Trade union leaders would be happy to meet you to discuss these issues, and the steps we must take now to support working people in Ukraine and in the UK.’
The union leaders are under the crude impression that if they support NATO’s war in the Ukraine against Russia they will be rewarded with more furloughing etc.
The Tories will reward their political cowardice by striking out even harder against trade union members. Far from more furloughing, the Tories will seek to pay for their war plans with huge price increases, wage cuts, savage cuts in the NHS and by cutting the dole.
They want the working class to pay the full bill of their anti-Russian campaign.
The WRP calls for the resignation of the entire TUC General Council. They must be replaced by leaders who will call a general strike to bring down the Tories and to nationalise the banks and the major industries under workers’ management to bring in socialism. This is what workers want, not a crude plan for the TUC to do the Tories dirty work, but to go forward to socialism.